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Wineries, sumptuous food and wonderful vineyard walks where beams of afternoon sun light up the leaves and make the air sparkle like gold.
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What to do and where to go?
When one dreams of touring a wine region, the imagination fills with golden sunsets, majestic mountains and vineyards as far as the eye can see.
The wineries of Agrelo are well prepared to receive visitors. And among the better ones, you’ll find good restaurants in addition to wine and package tours. Each with its own gastronomic specialty, they all offer lunch, facing the mountains.
If however the plan is to get on and visit some wineries with the simple desire to try great wines, Tapiz, Dolium, Sottano, Chakana and Walter Bressia Wines are good stops. Not to mention the pyramid of Catena Zapata and Viña Cobos from American winemaker Paul Hobbs, considered among the most prestigious wines in the country.
As all these wineries are relatively close to each other, touring the wine routes by bike is an excellent idea. Those with pedalling power can check the programs on offer.
The wines of Agrelo
Agrelo is a classic terroir for Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec. Few reds have the sumptuously soft tannins that Agrelo brings to these varieties.
Agrelo has a cool climate and excellent sun exposure, thanks to its altitude, between 900- 1000m. It is dry, with cold winters and very hot summers. If that doesn’t distinguish it from the other regions, the real secret of Agrelo is invisible to the eye: deep, sandy clay-loam soils that allow the roots of the vines to explore the terrain and keep their tips wet. For this, the wines are well balanced with soft, silky tannins. Because they are never under real stress. With each variety having its own particular balance.
The Malbec in general is voluminous, with intense flavours, a juicy palate with a firm finish and a deep fruity expression, with fresh black plums. A handbook definition that has lead many to call Agrelo the ‘cradle of Argentine Malbec.’
Cabernet Sauvignon, meanwhile, is the one that feels most at ease. The wines are broad and enveloping, yet lively, with aromas reminiscent of cassis, blackberries, juniper berries and spices. Pulenta Estate, Decero Remolinos Vineyard, Angelica Zapata Alta or Septima Gran Reserva are notable examples. A selection of wines in which the aromatic depth of the terroir mixes with intense flavours, good body and a docile texture.
So if the plan is to visit wineries, eat well and taste some great wines, look no further than Agrelo. And once back at home, with a good bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon or Malbec from the area, you can reminisce about the trip. In any case, the invitation has been sent.
Written by Alejandro Iglesias, for Wines of Argentina.